Inside Real Estate - January 29th, 2020 |

Inside Real Estate (Jan 29th, 2020)

What homebuyers overlook most / Malibu mansion lists for $115M / Hottest neighborhoods in Austin

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1. Most homebuyers overlook hidden fees when submitting an offer, according to real estate expert Aaron Kirman. He advises shoppers to consider all potential costs before committing to a property. These could include escrow, title and inspection fees. Kirman also said that “timing, research and patience are key” when looking for a new home. Before closing on a property, it’s important to consider every detail, “from proximity to a hospital to average price point of surrounding properties.” A new study showed that 40 percent of Americans said they consider home buying the most stressful event of their life, reports. Doing your due diligence could help to ease concerns, and make the process go more smoothly. - CNBC

2. Real estate investment platform Cadre has hired a new president: former Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts CEO Allen Smith. He said the tech startup appealed to him because "Real estate investment management is not known for great innovation, so what Cadre does is unique.” The company's CEO Ryan Williams said this has been the company's biggest hire. He and senior White House adviser Jared Kushner — son-in-law to President Donald Trump — co-founded Cadre; Kushner retains an equity stake in the company. This political association has posed some difficulty for the young company, which faces a unique issue most tech startups never encounter. - FORBES

3. The hotel industry is bracing for the impact that the coronavirus could have on its bookings. On Tuesday, new data showed that the virus has increased by 60 percent, with 4,700 cases in 17 states, the majority of which have been in China. This could hit some major hotel chains: “Marriott reported Chinese travelers accounted for $260M on its balance sheet, while Hilton has a similar reliance on the country’s tourists,” Citibank said Monday. Hotels are being advised to follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Virgin Hotels CEO Raul Leal said they’ve approached the matter by having a conference call with all of their general managers to ensure that they’re on the same page. - BISNOW

4. Real estate startups are learning from WeWork's difficult 2019 by slowing down their rates of expansion. Last year, the co-working company failed on an initial public offering and shuttered several locations after it had launched a whopping 500 outposts. Real estate brokerage Compass, for example, has not moved into a new market since 2018. Unlike tech companies, real estate businesses can't grow quickly with low overhead, so they can’t follow Amazon or Google’s rapid-growth models. - WALL STREET JOURNAL

5. Billionaire David Saperstein is listing his Malibu mansion at $115 million. The Metro Networks founder's 12-bedroom estate is situated on 2.6 acres of land that overlook the ocean. The sleek, contemporary residence spans more than 10,000 square feet and is formed in a curious shape with a courtyard at the entrance. Its intriguing design details include glass catwalks and a grand foyer with a two-story 18-foot crystal chandelier. Suited for entertaining, the mega-mansion has “a 20-seat movie theater, 40-camera security system and a spacious gym with three screens.” Outside is a sports court and eight-car garage. - LA TIMES

6. RealPage, a property management software provider, has been hacked and robbed of $10.5 million. The hackers reportedly gained access to the Texas-based company's financial accounts by obtaining an employee's login password. RealPage said that it has managed to reclaim $4.5 million. Some of the stolen funds were allegedly laundered, while others were transferred to a Nigerian account in at least one case. - THE REAL DEAL

7. The three hottest neighborhoods in Austin are Wells Branch, Brushy Creek and Mueller, according to an annual ranking by real estate brokerage Redfin. These are situated all across the Texas capital and are priced at between $300,000 and more than $500,000. Wells Branch ranks among the top markets, likely because the new Apple campus is creating investor interest in that northwest Austin hub. When compared to other local areas, these three enclaves had the shortest median days on market. - CULTUREMAP AUSTIN

8. According to some real-estate experts, the residential market in Seattle is expected to be highly competitive for buyers in 2020. A sharp decrease in home inventory — due to low mortgage rates, which spurred sales and slower new construction — will raise home prices and increase demand. All four professionals who contributed their opinions to this report all said they don’t anticipate a market downtown for Seattle. On the contrary, they see the market remaining strong as long as interest rates are low and the economy is strong. - SEATTLE PI

9. There's a new iBuyer in the Midwest, according to a recent news release. Chicago-area-based Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Starck Real Estate just launched QuickBuy in cooperation with iBuyer Moving Station, LLC. The alternative home-sales option will present sell-curious homeowners with "instant" offers for their properties. Interested people can peruse their options at a local Starck Real Estate brokerage. "The web is increasingly crowded with real estate algorithms and home value estimates, but the majority of consumers look to their local real estate broker for superior market intel and trusted guidance for their real estate transaction,” Aaron Starck, president of Starck Real Estate, said. “People simply can’t get that from the internet.” - BUSINESSWIRE

10. Christopher Lloyd, the actor who played Doc Brown in the “Back to the Future” series, just listed his Montecito, California, bungalow for $1.65 million. The cozy, 1,000-square-foot Mediterranean-style cottage is perched on an elevated plot. Its upper-level terrace features a fire pit and offers ocean panoramas. Lloyd's portfolio of homes in the area includes a contemporary Santa Barbara residence and a beachfront home in Ventura. - VARIETY

Written and curated by Darla Guillen Gilthorpe. Darla writes for the Houston Chronicle, where she was part of its 2018 Pulitzer Prize finalist staff. She was previously an editor at Vox Media site Eater and has had bylines in Elle Decor, SFGate and various other outlets. Follow her on Twitter here.

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